Monday, March 22, 2010

Garden Designs

As of last October 2009, I have been living in my home for five years. During those five years I put in three raised beds and dug out five gardens out of the gravel driveway. I made a patio where the previous owners (PO) parked their cars. I decide that I did not need most of my yard around the house to be a driveway. The back section of the driveway is fairly level and would not need to be terraced before I could put in gardens.

The picture above shows all the gardens I dug out of the gravel. The garden on the right side and in back of the bird feeder is the first garden I dug in 2006. The one to the left of it is the second garden. During the digging of the second garden in the summer of 2007, I back my car in to it and required a tow truck to pull me out for over a $100. I also burned up a small rototiller in 2007.

The spring of 2008, I put in the right front garden and in late summer I finished putting in the two small gardens to the left. I also widen the garden next to the back porch by 2-3 feet in 2008. This garden was first dug out in the fall of 2005 so I could transfer the peonies out of the lawn. I widen this garden because it was too must trouble trying to mow a thin strip of grass between the garden and the patio.

The raised beds were dug in 2005 and 2006 and are to the right of the first garden dug out of the driveway. This year I only made two bamboo trellises for my squash vines for the garden. I was all trying to make three cold frames to place over the raised beds but time ran out for 2009 gardening projects.

Projects for 2010: Put in a new garden on the south side side between the house and gardens. Make the three cold frames for the raised beds. Possibly start a raspberry patch and grape vines.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

It's a Sears House!

I moved into my house on October 15, 2004 and it is located in the driftless area of Wisconsin. The house was ordered from a Sears catalog and delivery by rail. The house is called “Crafton” and the floor plan is 3318C (the one in the middle) and was in the catalog in the 1930’s. My house’s floor plan is flipped with the bedrooms on the left side. The home original cost was around $916 to $1,399.

I was told by the last PO that they found a Sears mailing label when doing work on the place. I found the Sears label on old broken up door frame in my shed while cleaning. The picture shows the mailing label that would be placed on your order.

The PO remodeled the bathroom and kitchen so I have been trying to determine what they looked like before the remodeling. I have some idea but would be interested in finding someone who has an unaltered kitchen or bathroom.

The dining room still has the original build-in china cabinet. Most of the molding is still left but I believe the rooms had at one time crown moldings. I can only guess this since the plaster is indented slightly 3 to 2 inches next to the ceiling in all the rooms.

Most the windows and doors are still there. The kitchen window was altered in attempt to make it more efficient but this window leaks the most. They ordered a replacement window to be inserted in the old window frame. The replaced insert are missing the 6 over 6 and it looks awful. I been planning to replace it but now it has moved up on my “To Do” because I have found wet rot last fall while scraping off paint. Both closet doors in the bedrooms were removed and replaced with cheap hollow sliding doors. I looked for the door but one of the POs must have thrown them out. I started to replace the closet doors with folding door that at least match the profile of the original doors in the house.

I consider myself lucky that most of the house has not been changed. I still have the front porch. since many a house front porch has been lost only to become part of the house. Lastly the final change to the floor plan is a small 8x10 ft three-season porch added to the back of the house with a deck off it. The three-season porch may have been added at the time the house was build but the deck was add by the last owner's because the three steps up to the porch did not have a small landing next to the door.

If you are interested in knowing more about Sears home I would suggested Rosemary Thornton Site: The Wisconsin Historical Society has a very nice article about Mail Order Homes: